Spain: January 1531, 11-20

Pages 17-31

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 4 Part 2, 1531-1533. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1882.

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January 1531, 11-20

11 Jan. 591. Muxetula to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 110.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 291.
Reports a conversation he had with the Pope about the Council. The duke of Albany recommends delay until his master, the king of France, has met with the Emperor in Flanders, or in some city of Italy, whither the Pope may also go, and discuss the matters to be proposed to the Council. His Holiness, however, persists in his determination, though the thing may not be to his taste. For the reasons given in his letter, and which prothonotary Gambara has since had charge to explain verbally, the Council will be convoked without attending to the objections of France or any other country whatsoever, sure as he (the Pope) is that nothing coming from the Emperor's hands can be other than beneficial to him. Such at least were his words at the last audience. Meanwhile, there can be no doubt that every day that passes new fears and suspicions about this Council are instilled into the Pope's mind; such are the difficulties raised, and the dangers announced, that not only the Pope, who is naturally timid and suspicious (sospechoso). but any other person might be shaken by them.—Rome, 11th January 1531.
Signed: " Juan Anto. Muscetula (sic).
Addressed: " Sacre Caes. et Cath. Mti."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 2.
12 Jan. 592. The Empress Isabella to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 22, f. 118. With regard to Her Most Serene Highness, the queen of England, our aunt, every care is here being taken of her affairs, and by the first courier to Rome the opinions of the "audiencias," and other persons who have written on the case since the departure of Dr. Ortiz, shall be forwarded to the ambassadors. The Doctor himself took many with him, as I informed Your Majesty at the time.
Indorsed: " Paragraph of a letter from the Empress to the Emperor."
Spanish. Contemporary copy. p. ½.
12 Jan. 593. Muxetula to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 852,
ff. 102–3.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 291.
The necessary briefs have been obtained, and nothing has been left undone on my part to promote Your Majesty's service as far as the Queen's case is concerned. The Pope, moreover, has returned a proper answer to the King's most intemperate letter, so much so, that on reading it he cannot fail to own that he was in the wrong. Indeed his very improper epistle called for such an answer, both in justification of His Holiness' doings, and for the allusions therein made to Your Majesty.
I have also contrived that the Pope should send one of the briefs to his Nuncio [in England], that he may in case of need present it to the King, so that nothing may be attempted in England in the meantime, and pending a suit of which His Holiness is to be the judge. The Pope at first shewed some reluctance at issuing this brief for fear of increasing the King's suspicions, but we (Mai and myself) persuaded him that in issuing a brief of the kind he did nothing but what was proper and needful to prevent any steps being taken to the prejudice of the trial now pending before His Holiness, &c —Rome, 12th January 1531.
Signed: " Juan Anto. Muscetula."
Addressed: " Sacre Cæs. et Cath. Mti."
Indorsed: "Rome, 1531. To His Majesty. From Muxetula, xi January 1531. The whole of this despatch to be carefully read. (fn. n1)
Spanish. Holograph partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 6.
12 Jan. 594. The Same to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 852,
ff. 102–3.
B.M. Add. 28,582
f. 293.
The Pope tells him that according to the letters of his Nuncio the king of France is still greatly preoccupied with the affairs of Italy. The duke of Albany persistently wants him to decide about the offer of a marriage between his niece and the second son of France, promising that his master would in that case conclude a new and more favourable treaty with him, and in all other things do his bidding. The Pope answered the Duke in general terms, saying that he was very much flattered by the proposal, but would do nothing without the Emperor's consent.
The Pope himself repeated last night the conversation he had with the Duke. Among other things, he told him that the first thing for his master, the King, to do was to attend to the interests of religion, in common with other princes; that being done he (the Pope) would be glad to treat about the marriage with the consent of His Imperial Majesty, not otherwise.
The Duke, as it would appear, hinted that if the Council was not to the Pope's taste, he had better refuse his consent at once. If his master had lately written in favour of it, it was merely at the Emperor's suggestion and to please him. He (the King) had no particular desire for the Council, but would act in the affair at His Holiness' will. The Pope answered that the Council was, in his opinion, a most important step; he was in favour of its celebration, provided it did not become a greater source of evil in this matter of the Lutherans. He had certainly written to the Emperor, expressing certain doubts about its expediency and opportuneness, but when the Emperor's answer came back he would at once determine the whole matter, &c.
The king of France is asking the Pope that those bishoprics in his kingdom, which were hitherto bestowed by election among the [French] clergy, (fn. n2) should henceforward be of royal patronage, on the plea that the elections frequently fall on undeserving ecclesiastics. He (the King) is no doubt trying for this because he knows that His Imperial Majesty has obtained a similar grant from His Holiness; but the case is very different, &c. The duke of Albany is treating of this affair with some of the cardinals, telling them that if the Emperor has conferred grants and bestowed pensions on some of them, his master will do still more in that way.
The briefs of inhibition for the English business have been made out, and the Pope has answered the King's last letter in a becoming and fit manner; that is to say, he has plainly shewn him that he (the Pope) and the Emperor feel themselves perfectly justified in acting as they are doing.
One of the briefs sent by the Pope to his Nuncio in England [baron del Borgo], authorises him to make use of it in case of need, i.e., should the King attempt anything " de facto " in prejudice of the suit. The Pope did not much like this measure as he was afraid of increasing thereby the King's suspicions, but could not do otherwise, it being his undoubted right and duty as a judge in this case to see that justice be not rendered impossible.—Rome, 12th January 1531.
Signed: " Gio. Ant. Muscetula " (sic).
Indorsed by Idiaguez: " To His Majesty, from Muscetula. 12th January."
Spanish. Holograph entirely in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 6.
13 Jan. 595. Miçer Mai to the High Commander.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 49.
B. M. Add. 28,352,
f. 301.
This very night, as I stated in my despatch to the Emperor, a duplicate of the Papal brief has been made, which is to be sent to the Nuncio in England, together with a letter from His Holiness. The Nuncio is instructed to present it in case of need, and thank God the whole affair seems now pretty sure. However, as it might come to pass that these people should get orders (cartas) and counter orders (contra cartas). I beg Your Lordship to see that the measures I point out in my letter to the Emperor be taken, and likewise to procure a letter from our master for the Papal Nuncio in England, who knowing perhaps that he can render service, may perhaps feel inclined to extend still further the discretional powers (alargar mas el arbitrio) which His Holiness has given him.
After closing my despatch to the Emperor the news arrived that Alberto di Carpi was dangerously ill and not expected to live. However, as the intelligence comes from a servant of the duke of Ferrara I do not attach much credit to it.
Conversation with the Venetian ambassador on general politics—the Turk, France, and the Council.—With regard to this last subject the ambassador told me he had heard that it would not take place, and that these Romans were glad of it. He (the Venetian) was sorry, because the Pope and the cardinal said that it was with the Emperors consent, and that there were here at Rome letters from Your Lordship confirming the statement. My answer was that he astonished me greatly, and that never to this day had I heard anything of the sort. "How could I believe (said I) that letters from the High Commander of Leon have been received in Rome containing such a declaration as you say, when I, who am in private correspondence with him, and who am Imperial ambassador at this Court, have not heard a word of it ?" The Venetian agreed with me that the report must be untrue. The person from whom he had it was half a Frenchman, and could not be trusted. I then asked him how it was that the wisest councillors in Venice, as the Pope once said to me, were not in favour of the Council His answer was that the Pope had once said the same thing to him; he (the ambassador) could not imagine how the thing originated, unless it was that in the brief which was sent to the Signory concerning the Council it was expressly said that it would meet to discuss matters of Faith and Turkish affairs, and to say the truth, these last were very unpopular in Venice; people would have nothing to do with them. This, he added, might be a reason for refusing their consent, but, on the contrary, they wished for it.
I asked him why the Council was acceptable in Venice. "For many reasons," answered the Venetian. "The first, because we are Christians and friends of peace. The second, because of the great trade we carry on with Germany; and last, not least, because we are more afraid of the Turks than of any other power. Our fear (he continued) is not so much by sea as by land ; by sea the Turk can do us no harm, by land he could, but only after traversing Germany; which country once reduced to Christianity, the Signory has nothing to fear."
Has pressed the Pope for Florence to join the league, &c.
A letter has been received from ambassador Figueroa.—Rome, 13th January 1531.
P.S.—Letters from the Court of France of the 28th December have been received. The King was amusing himself at St. Germain. Courtiers there believed that the Emperor would be compelled by sheer necessity to do what they (the French) wanted. The Most Christian King did not approve of the arrangement made for Milan or Mantua, in consequence of which people here rejoice. Still marriages between the Emperor's and King's sons and daughters are much talked of, and that Francis third son is to marry the princess of Portugal (Maria). Conversing with the Pope on this latter subject, he said to me: "They want the duke of Orleans to marry my niece, and I have just now received a letter from the King to that effect." After which His Holiness laughed, and said " These Frenchmen fancy that we are to believe everything they say, &c."
Signed: "Mai."
Addressed: "To High Commander Covos, the Emperor's principal secretary."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 4.
13 Jan. 596. The Same to the Same.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 47.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 301.
Has kept back the courier one whole day, owing to the Pope, cardinal D'Osma, and Don Pedro de la Cueva not having their letters ready. Does not regret it, for in the meantime a duplicate copy of the inhibition brief for England has been made; it is here enclosed, together with the Pope's own letter to his Nuncio (baron del Borgho). The affair is now ensured, but as it might be that letters and pressing orders had been given, he (Mai) begs him to take the steps recommended in his despatch to the Emperor, and write a letter to Chapuys for the intimation to be made at once (fn. n3) and another to the Papal Nuncio, who knowing that he can do service [to the King] might perhaps be tempted to keep the brief in his possession longer even than the Pope allows him to do.
Alberto da Carpi and his dangerous illness.
Venice.—Conversation of Mai with the ambassador of the Signory.
The Council and the Pope's intentions respecting it.
French news in cipher.—Rome, 13th January 1531.
Signed: "Mai."
Addressed: " To the most illustrious and gracious lord, the High Commander of Leon, the Emperor's first secretary."
Spanish. Holograph in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 3.
13 Jan. 597. The Emperor to his brother king Ferdinand.
S. E. L. 1,454,
f. 127.
B. M. Add.28,582,
f. 300.
After squaring accounts, a balance has been found in his, Ferdinand's, favour of 35,000 florins of gold. Should the Venetians not pay the whole of the 200,000 ducats which he (the Emperor) has made over to him in payment of the dower, he acknowledges his liablity to pay him as much as the Venetian payment may fall short of the 200,000 above mentioned.—Aquisgran, 13th January 1531.
Spanish. Contemporary copy. p. 1.
13 Jan. 598. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 227, No. 5.
The day before yesterday, the 11th inst., this King received letters from Rome of the 20th ult., which were by no means agreeable to him and to the Lady [Anne], as Your Majesty will judge by what I shall say hereafter. Last night the duke of Nolpholc (Norfolk) sent to ask me to go and meet him at the convent of the Grey Friars at nine in the morning, as he wished to speak to me. I went thither at the appointed hour and found the Duke, attended by the Treasurer and Dr. Estienne (Stephen Gardiner), the King's first secretary, Taking me into a secret chapel (une chapelle bien secrete) the Duke spoke first and said he had sent for me for the express purpose of acquainting me (both as ambassador of Your Imperial Majesty and as a friend whom he esteemed and knew to be well inclined and desirous of peace) with a statute made by the Estates of the kingdom, and which had been promulgated and preconized, against whomsoever should dare to execute mandates or provisions emanating from the Roman Court to the detriment of the honour, or authority of the King and kingdom. During the last two days they had received advices from Rome that the Pope, at the earnest request of the Queen's people, was on the point of issuing certain decretals very injurious to the King and to them, which should the Pope himself come to England to have them executed, not even they would be strong enough to save him from the popular fury. For which reason, he said, he begged and entreated me that should such decretals come to my hands I would not interpose to have them executed. After which the Duke went on to say that the popes in old times had in vain attempted to usurp in England certain authority and prerogatives; the Kings predecessors on the throne had never consented to it, and it was not to be expected that king Henry should suffer it at the present moment. He further went on to say that kings were before popes; the King [of England] was absolute master in his own kingdom, and acknowledged no superior. That an Englishman, that is Brennus, had once reduced Rome under his obedience. That Constantius had reigned in England, and that Helen, the mother of Constantine, was English by birth, and several other things as little pertinent to the matter in question as the above.
After warmly thanking the Duke for the good-will he bore me, I told him in substance that my curiosity did not go so far as to inquire into the statutes and ordinances of their kingdom, by which I did not presume that they wished to bind the agents and ministers of Your Imperial Majesty. Respecting the rights which His Holiness assumed to exercise here, in England, though I had read something about them in their national chronicles, I had nothing to say. I did not wish to dispute the right and power which the Pope could exercise against kings and kingdoms disobedient to his authority. That was a notorious fact in full practice in our very days. If they wished to discuss this question in any way, or treat of matters concerning His Holiness, they had better address themselves to his Nuncio in England. In my humble opinion (I said) it would have been far more reasonable and expedient for them to procure the removal and eradication of those very evils which had caused the Pope to decree the mandates to which they alluded, than try by [royal] authority and against all reason to impede the judicial execution of the same, since the Pope proceeding, as he does, by the ways of justice could not do injury or detriment to the privileges of the kingdom or royal authority.
I told them besides that they might be sure that Your Majesty not only would not allow the proceedings to go on, but would never consent to an unreasonable sentence against the King, whose close ally, friend, and relative you were, nor against his kingdom, which you were prepared to protect and defend as well as your own. For my part, if I had orders from Your Majesty to procure the executions of any Papal decrees, they might be persuaded that all their warnings would not stand in the way of my duty, for whatever might be the result of my act, I should faithfully execute the Imperial commands. As to the nation at large, I did not think that they would offer resistance to the Pope's decretals, but on the contrary help on their execution with all their power, for the principal cause for which the English people had begun to hate the Pope was their, imagining (as they did at first) that he wished to carry on the King's suit against the Queen. They ought to know that truth and justice had such inherent power that they must reign and rule everywhere, even among thieves (larrons). and in Hell itself; and that there is no nation, however uncivilised and rude, that does not pay respect to them. "Believe me, (said I to the Duke) whatever fluctuations the Church of Christ may be subjected to, she was never so depressed, nor left so unprovided with defenders (fauteurs) as not to have been able, by her own authority, or by the favour and protection of truth and justice, to carry the world with her, nations as well as princes, who are especially instituted for the maintenance of the same." They (the English) had no reason to complain of Your Majesty, if after exhausting all the means of conciliation, and using all manner of gracious persuasions to recall the King to his duty, you caused justice to take her course. His reply was that they did not intend to complain of Your Majesty, but as to the Pope, they expected no justice at his hands, for if he had only chosen to do his duty he might have allowed the King to divorce his present wife and take another, as his predecessors in the papacy had done with other princes. These the Duke did not name, but I, fancying that kings Charles and Louis of France, and Ladislas of Hungary were meant, explained the difference in their case; and on his insisting that the archbishop of Canterbury was the only ecclesiastic to whom the cognizance of this present affair belonged, proved to him the contrary by many legitimate reasons, adding that it was a common saying, but a very true one, that things badly founded and badly begun could not have a good end, and that I wondered much that he (who in all other matters was considered most wise and clear-headed) could be so blind in this particular one (as if God had obscured his understanding) as to make the archbishop of Canterbury and other prelates subscribe certain letters addressed to the Pope, by means of which letters the said archbishop and prelates had notoriously rendered themselves suspicious, and incapable of associating with good Christians, a remark to which (though I begged him and Dr. Stephen to give an answer) they knew not what to say. (fn. n4)
Perceiving, however, that they seemed more pleased than annoyed at my speech; thinking also that in the state of fear and doubt in which they were owing to the news lately received from Rome, my preaching to them might be of some avail, I seized the opportunity as a favourable one, and commenced to say: That though until that day I had carefully abstained from entering into a polemic with them on matters connected with the pretended divorce, since I saw that neither remonstrances nor prayers were of any use whatever, and that justice must needs have its course, yet since the occasion offered itself, and they seemed disposed to discuss the subject, I would at once tell them my mind. I did not hesitate to assure them that had Your Imperial Majesty, who, owing to your many kingdoms so widely separated from each other, is in more need of a large number of male children than any other crowned prince, found yourself in the situation in which the King is, and likewise free to contract matrimony, but having such a daughter as the Princess [Mary], and should the King request you, as earnestly as you do request him, not to marry a second time, you would not have hesitated one single moment to please him in this respect in order to avoid the scandal and inconveniences whereof the Duke himself had once spoken to me, but that Your Majesty would willingly refrain from taking such a step. On this very topic I made them suitable observations, proving to them that Your Majesty could not possibly have taken another course in that affair, and that you were in duty bound to take up the defence of the Queen, your aunt. I told them that should the Princess marry there was a much greater chance of the King having thus a legitimate successor to his crown than by begetting a natural one in some other way, better able, and with greater hope of seeing very soon a masculine descent. "Besides," I added, "if it be true, as the Duke himself said to me once, that the true and legitimate right of king Henry to the throne of England proceeded from the female line, that is to say, from his mother, it seemed as if God, reason, and honesty counselled such a course, since he was the father of so noble, virtuous, and accomplished a princess." To these arguments of mine the Duke knew not what to reply, except that, nevertheless, if the King could marry again he would certainly take another wife, by which expression, if he could, I was particularly struck as it was the first time that I heard it from his lips. (fn. n5)
Among other casual remarks which would take too much time to relate, I told them that Your Majesty and the Queen, your aunt, had more reason to be discontented with the Pope in this business than the King himself, whom he had gratified and favoured as much as he could. Upon which the Duke, coming to speak incidentally about the Council, said in plain terms that it might perhaps happen that His Holiness would be a loser by the bargain (ne sen trouveroit le mellieur marchant). I replied that they (the King and his ministers), had partly been, without their being aware of it the cause of its convocation, for the Pope wishing to justify himself as to the many slandering and calumnious reports circulated here about his person and acts, and in order to shew to the World that he had never given the King and kingdom cause to proceed against him or the ecclesiastical order, had in fact waived his fears and scruples, and finally given his sanction to the measure. Nothing, moreover, could be better for the King than the meeting of a General Council, wherein he might bring forward his complaints of His Holiness, if he has any, or propose the reformation of the English clergy, of which the Duke had often spoken to me. His Holiness had acted in this case as a good prelate and the shepherd of the Christian flock, since being, as he is supreme judge in such matters, he consented to be judged by others.
The Duke's answer was that the Pope had no business to interfere in affairs of this kind, except to decree and discuss the cases of heresy.
Though the friendship now existing between Your Imperial Majesty and the Pope, and the sense of honour and duty by which I consider myself bound, prompted me to take up the defence of the Pope in this instance, yet I must confess that had I not been compelled to do so by the accusations of the Duke and his colleagues I might not have carried my apology so far.
After the above arguments (which I think were taken in good part) the Duke went on to say that some days ago he had had occasion to shew to the French ambassador a copy of the inscription on the tomb of king Arthur (I could not understand at the time to which of the Arthurs he alluded), which inscription he produced in a parchment roll out of his pouch and handed over to me, adding that he had caused it to be transcribed for my use. I looked at it, and saw only these words written in large letters PATRICIVS ARCTVRVS BRITANNIE, GALLIE, GERMANIE, DACIE IMPERATOR. My answer was that I was sorry to see that he was not entitled also Emperor of Asia, IMPERATOR ASIE, as he might have left the present king Henry for his successor in such vast dominions; but that as all things in this world were so subject to change, it was reasonable that an English monarch of our days should conquer a portion of the provinces above named, since in those very countries men had been found who had conquered and held for a long time this very kingdom of England, where the succession of William of Normandy still lasted. If by shewing me the inscription the Duke meant that the present king Henry might be such a conqueror as king Arthur, I could not help observing that the Assyrians, Persians. Macedonians, and Romans had also made great conquests, and everyone knew what had become of their empire.
In short, I told them that it seemed to me as if the King, their master, had much better allow the Pope's mandates to be intimated to him and to two or three more persons whom they concerned, than follow the example of Philip, the father of Alexander [the Great], who would not dismiss from his service a man who was continually criticizing his own acts and speaking ill of him, because, he said, he preferred the slanderer to remain where he was, and spread his calumnies within the precincts of his palace, to sending him away to spread the same through the World. Should the King for the same reason oppose the execution of the Papal mandates here in England, they might perhaps be printed abroad and circulated, thus making the affair food for public scandal, which after all would be worse for him than if he had graciously received the intimations in due obedience to the Holy Apostolic See. This last objection of mine provoked no answer from the Duke or from those present, and certainly, should the King obstinately persist in his determination, it appears to me that it would be expedient to have the whole of the Papal decisions (provisions) from the very beginning printed and widely circulated.
This very day the duke of Norfolk has notified to the Papal Nuncio the pains and dangers to which any person attempting to have the mandate executed exposes himself. I am told that the notification has been made in rather sharp words, and that the Duke said to him how surprised he was to hear after the fine words and promises of His Holiness to cardinal de Grammont, that the Pope had sent orders to proceed in the suit, and still more to find that His Holiness had already made or was about to make certain provisions and mandates highly detrimental to the supreme authority of the King and kingdom, whereas he (the Duke) had more than once told him that the King would not proceed "de facto" in the affair, in which he assured him there was now less probability than ever of advancing, whatever might be said to the contrary. The Nuncio had no leisure, as he tells me, to respond or make any observations save that he knew nothing about the mandates to which he alluded, but that if the Pope sent them to him for execution there would be no pain or danger that would deter him from doing so, and that he should consider himself happy to run any risk or die for the sake of his lord and master.
The said Nuncio at my request has called to-day on the archbishop of Canterbury, on whom a good deal of the good and bad in the Queen's business principally depends, to remonstrate with him and exhort him to have due regard to God, to his own conscience, to the authority of the Pope, and to the justice, welfare, and tranquillity of this kingdom. I am told that whilst the Nuncio and the Archbishop were together the King's confessor, one of the promoters of this affair, came into the room. Owing to this circumstance the Archbishop had only time to tell the Nuncio that the King had come personally to his private dwelling, to try and win him over to his cause. His answer had been that on no account would he act against the Pope's prohibition and his own conscience, and that next Tuesday he would say more about it; but the arrival of the King's confessor, as I said above, had put an end to their conversation on the subject. I shall not fail to remind the Nuncio and prepare him for his visit, that we may, if possible, unravel the mystery, and learn what the King and his ministers intend to do. The Nuncio, however, has not yet received an answer to the Papal brief addressed to the King respecting the convocation of a General Council, and fears that the answer will not come until that of the Most Christian King he known. Neither has the messenger sent to the king of Scotland with a similar brief returned from that country, though he is expected back every day.
I hear from a very good quarter that this King was never in such a fright and perplexity as since he has load the last news from Rome, so much so that the gentlemen of his chamber tell me that ever since he passes sleepless nights, and so does the Lady [Anne].
Yesterday the prelates met to deliberate and propose what matters were to be laid before Parliament, but there was no mention made of the Queen's case, which circumstance, added to what the duke of Norfolk said to the Nuncio, is a sign that they do not intend at present bringing it before Parliament, that the session will be a short one, and that the assembly will be prorogued.
I have been told by an eye witness that when Jehan Jocquin was about to leave for France, and had received his last despatches he missed a memorandum which he himself had placed in the King's hands; and upon one of the royal secretaries telling him that it should be sent after him, as the King had not yet perused it owing to his being ill in bed, in consequence of the grief and anger he had lately gone through, the ambassador said "No excuse of that kind will do for me. I must have my memorandum back and will not depart without it." (fn. n6) Upon which they were obliged to go to the King, wake him from his sleep, and bring back the paper which Jocquin immediately threw into the fire, from which I conclude that there must have been something very important in it.
The same informer tells me that 4,000 or 5,000 crs. which were a year ago given to a German, about whom I wrote in one of my despatches, were spent in procuring the opinions [of lawyers and divines] in Germany, but that Luther and his followers have decided against the King in the divorce case, which circumstance is in my opinion enough to increase his head-ache and prevent his sleep. I beg to be excused if, in pursuance of orders received, and for the better fulfilment of my charge, I have been obliged to enter into such trifling details, &c.—London, 13th January [1531].
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
French. Holograph. pp. 8.
16 Jan. 599. Muxetula to the Same.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 108.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 304.
Has received the Imperial letters of the 30 th ult., and spoken to His Holiness about the affairs of Florence.
Respecting the duke of Ferrara (Alfonso d'Este) he (and Mai) have justified what has been done, as well as the form of the sentence. His Holiness is satisfied and thankful for the declaration the Emperor has made in that business.
Is in despair at seeing that the Italian potentates will not disburse one "real" of their war contribution. Keeps writing to Naples for the promised money.
(Cipher:) Hears that the French are in secret intelligence with the Adorni of Genoa. One of that family has gone over to France, and is now negotiating through the Grand Master (Anne de Montmorency). Galleys are also secretly being armed in France for some undertaking on the coast of Italy.
The lord of Mus (fn. n7) is likewise in treaty with the king of France for an invasion of the duchy of Milan, with an army of Grisons. All that lord asks from France is money to raise troops. The French listen to his proposals, pretending that they are only waiting for the Emperor's answer to their overtures. Should this be unfavourable, and he refuse to give Milan to the daughter of queen Eleanor, on her marriage to the duke of Orleans, then they will help the castellan of Mus with all their forces, since the Emperor rejects their friendship and alliance. They (the French) keep telling the Pope that had it not been for this chance of Milan, they would willingly have asked for the hand of his niece for Mr. d'Enghien, (fn. n8) but that if the marriage of the duke of Orleans is not effected their former proposal will stand good. (fn. n9) All these things and many more in the recent advices from France the Pope has told him (Muxetula), begging that he may communicate them to Court.—Rome, 16th January 1531. Duplicate, to-day the 21st.
Signed: "Jo. Ant.. Muscetula."
Addressed: "Sacre Caes. et Cath. Mti."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 2.
19 Jan. 600. MiÇer Mai to the Empress Isabella.
S. E. L. 852, f. 41 This last courier so took me by surprise that I was really prevented from saying all I knew concerning the matrimonial cause. As I have, however, fully informed the President [Tavera] of everything relating thereto, I need not say any more here, but request Your Majesty to order that all possible diligence be used, and all calls upon the Imperial treasury for this present business attended to, for such is the Emperor's will.
The cause of the Order of St. John [of Jerusalem] has been suspended, the Pope having promised to do what is right in it. Enclosed is account of late events [in Italy]. The ordinary courier will leave in 10 days, and then I will write again more fully.
Signed; "Mai."
Addressed: " To the most high and most powerful lady, the Empress and Queen, &c."
Spanish. Original. p. 1.
20 Jan. 601. The Same to the archbishop of Santiago.
S.E.L. 852, f. 134.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 306.
His last of the 28th December ult. has been duly received, as well as the papers relating to the church of Compostella, and to the payment of a pension of 2,000 ducats to Don Jorge de Austria.
Is anxiously expecting the arrival of Dr. Ortiz to resume the proceedings with greater vigour. It would appear that the real difficulty now lies in facto. If it be true, as the Pope says, that the dispensation brief was granted "ex causa pacis," it will be necessary to look out for the deeds granted at the time of the Queen's marriage to this her second husband (con este Rey moderno). Should they be similar to those granted at the time of her marriage with El Arcturo (Arthur), of which we have already a copy, they cannot fail to be most useful for our present purpose.
Enclosed are certain compulsory letters (fn. n10) to procure all deeds required for the defence of the matrimonial cause. Let a rresh copy with all due solemnity be made by virtue of the said compulsory letters of all the papers sent on a former occasion, as well as another of the bull of dispensation, the original brief of which is in the Emperor's hands. Imagines that Lallemand knows the whereabouts of this bull, and of this second marriage contract; without them we cannot absolutely proceed in the defence.
For this very event and purpose, and for any other that may occur, he (Mai) has subrogated Dr. Beltran and Licte. Prada. Let them mount their mules, and ride through the country in search of the papers and documents wanted, and let them also put down in writing all the information they can gather respecting this affair, according to the note herein enclosed. (fn. n11) The said Doctor and Licentiate to be provided with money for all their expenses out of the Imperial treasury, for such is the Emperor's wish. And above all let the information and papers thus procured (fn. n12) come as quickly as possible, for in these matters one hour's delay is equivalent to one year, or rather to 1,000 years; first, because the Emperor being where he is now (fn. n13) it would be desirable to bring this affair to a close; and secondly, because as we are on the eve of a General Council, it is to be desired that the suit be decided before its celebration.
Besides the above, and in order to save time, I send Your Lordship a copy of the articles for the examination of the witnesses, that Your Lordship may have time to make the necessary inquiries and ascertain who has knowledge of the facts. The remissory letters (remisorias) for the examination of witnesses will shortly follow. The utmost activity is recommended; the commission being distributed to as many persons as possible, so that the inquiry may be conducted with all possible speed. They tell me here that Dona Maria Manrique will be able to furnish information on these points, or at least name the persons who can, since her mother (fn. n14) was with the Queen at the time. And I daresay that at Burgos many persons may still be found living who can give the evidence required.
One thing, however, must be borne in mind with regard to the deeds and papers (autos). when obtained, namely, that the expedition must not be delayed until the witnesses themselves are able to come, because the trial is of such a nature and must needs be conducted with such activity that perhaps it might be brought to a close before the appearance of the witnesses.—Rome, 20th January 1531.
Signed: "Mai."
Addressed: "To the very illustrious and most Revd. sir the archbishop of Santiago, president of the Grand Council of Castille, my lord."
Spanish. Original. pp. 5.


  • n1. An English abstract of this letter and of the preceding is to be found in Bergenroth's volume, Add. 28,582, ff 297–8.
  • n2. "Tambien pide que las ecclesias de francia, las quales se dan por election de la clerccia de francia, sean de su jus patronato (sic), diciendo que acen allá malas electiones."
  • n3. "Pero porque podria ser que esta gente tenga cartas y sobre cartas, supplico á V. S. que mande hazer las diligencias que escrivo en la otra para que se intimen."
  • n4. "Par les quelles lettres quant yl ny auroit autre rayson du monde les dit contubery et autres prelatz se sont notoyrement renduz suspectz et forclus de toute cognoyssance, a quoy non obstant que le [s] requisse ne me sçurent donner
  • n5. "A ce ne me sçeust le duc que respondre sinon bien froydement que non obstant tout cella, que si le roy pouvoit encoures se voudroit yl bien marier, de la quelle condition (sil pouvoit) ne mavoit encoures usé."
  • n6. "Car le roy lavoit questoit au lit, par conclusion bien marry et courrose quil estoit."
  • n7. Gianiacopo de Medici, at this time marquis of Mus. and of Marignano. See vol. iii., part 2, pp. 317–8.
  • n8. François de Bourbon, comtc d'Enghien.
  • n9. "Y dizen al Papa que ellos querrian dar á la nieta del papa Muss, de Anghem (Enghien) por no perder esta comodidad de cobrar cl ducado de Milan por via del matrimonio del duque de Orliens, mas que si esto no se concierta asi con V. Mr. que tambien le ofrecen para su nieta el duque de Orliens."
  • n10. "Aqui embio á V. Sa. unas compnlsorias para sacar auctos que hagan al proposito de la causa."
  • n11. Not to be found in the packet.
  • n12. A marginal note in the handwriting of one of the clerks of the Council (Vazquez de Molina?) has the following: "On the 13th of June the compulsory letters and instructions from Rome were delivered to Licte. Curiel, in the presence of Dr. Beltran and of Prada, the attorney-general (fiscal), besides a memorandum of the archdeacon of Guipuzcoa, and the letter of Miçer Mai which came with the 'compulsoriales.'"
  • n13. The .Emperor was then on the road to Brussels.
  • n14. A lady in waiting of queen Katharine on her first marriage.